Let's Remediate!


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Supplementary lecture slides for August 26th, 2010 class, DTC/Engl 375 "Language, Texts, Technology" at Washington State University.

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Let's Remediate!

  1. 1. Let’s Remediate!<br />WSU // DTC/ENGL 375<br />26 AUG2010<br />
  2. 2. Important Points About McLuhan<br />Look closer at the phrase “the medium is the message”<br />“medium” != mass media/communications like print, TV, web<br />“message” != basic content<br />Instead…<br />“medium” == any extension of ourselves<br />“message” == change that invention/innovation beings with it<br />Wait. What?<br />
  3. 3. The Medium<br />“a medium is any extension of ourselves”<br />Hammer extends our arm [and we use a hammer to build things using more power than just our arm could produce]<br />Wheel extends our legs and feet [and we use the wheel to travel more efficiently than our legs and feet can carry us]<br />“anything from which change emerges”<br />“All our inventions, innovations, ideas, and ideals are McLuhan media.”<br />
  4. 4. The Message<br />“the change of scale or pace or pattern that a new invention or innovation introduces into human affairs”<br />it is NOT the content alone; it is the change that the innovation brings with it<br />The example of the theatrical production: “it is not the play, but the change in attitude or action of the audience that results from the medium of the play itself.”<br />
  5. 5. Your Turn<br />Give an example of a message (and its attendant medium).<br />Remember, “the message of a newscast are not the news stories themselves but a change in the public attitude towards crime or the creation of a climate of fear”<br />[let’s find a happier example]<br />
  6. 6. So What About Remediation?<br />Remediation is not simply redoing something in a new form. <br />Such as: print to digital, or dusty book to e-book<br />Remediation finds that missing bit and emphasizes the fixing of it—the filling of the gap between the old medium and the new one.<br />A printed book is great [for some].<br />A digital book is great [for some].<br />If discussing the remediation of the book content itself, how does the transformation of the delivery format change the content [how does the medium affect the message]?<br />
  7. 7. We Want What We Want, NOW<br />“double logic of remediation”<br />Want to multiply its media<br />Want to erase all traces of mediation<br />Practical example: <br />Webcams of…anything: we want to see what we normally would not (nature, baby owls, scantily clothed people), so we feel as if we are there, but we can still tell we aren’t because the detritus of the delivery mechanism still exists.<br />
  8. 8. Remediation is Old<br />The process of constantly tweaking media to evoke a change in the message has been going on for centuries.<br />Illuminated manuscript example<br />the integration of text and images didn’t begin with the web!<br />
  9. 9. Initial Capitalized “P” at beginning of 2 Kings in the Bible; p for “prevaricatus”, which is (very roughly) Latin for “comes before”<br />
  10. 10. The Manicule. It is Awesome.<br />
  11. 11. No, really.<br />
  12. 12. Whitman Used It.<br />TO conclude—I announce what comes after me, <br />The thought must be promulged, that all I know at any time suffices for that time only—not subsequent time; <br />I announce greater offspring, orators, days, and then depart. <br />…<br />Remember my words—I love you—I depart from  materials, <br />I am as one disembodied, triumphant, dead.<br />-- “So Long!” (1860)<br />
  13. 13. When Remediating, Still Keep What Works<br />